2019 – Ride the West – Day 23 – Arroyo Grande to Solvang, CA

Day 23 – Arroyo Grande to Solvang

After yesterday’s amble my legs felt especially good this morning and so it was going to be one of those fun days where I throw caution to the wind.

We left Arroyo Grande in very misty conditions, mostly sea mist but there was a cold nip in the air and I’d wished I had my light wind jacket with me for the first few miles until I’d warmed up a little.  We found our way out of Arroyo Grande and were soon in the open country heading for our first stop of the day at Guadeloupe. I felt really good this morning and about 10 miles in as the road flattened out I decided to push on hard. Roy was on my tail and we made short measures of the ride into Guadeloupe across very open and flat countryside with a steady SW wind blowing against us. There wasn’t much in the town so we forwent our coffee and decided to push on to Orcutt at mile 30.5.

I stopped shortly after Guadeloupe and took some photos and was passed by the two Dave’s who are both fast riders. Roy was on ahead so I decided to grab their wheels and get towed back to Roy. It was a fast pace but when we finally reached Roy I hung on and Roy joined our pace line into Orcutt.  It was fast but fun and with 30 miles now under our belt we were almost halfway.

At Orcutt we found a nice restaurant and stopped for brunch, a half stack of pancakes for me and coffee. During our stop we discovered that’s the road ahead was closed to cyclist so a quick detour was calculated and we headed off as a group back to Hwy1. The group soon split and Roy and I trundled on at our own steady pace. At mile 39.4 we took a right turn and headed for the hills. Into the climbing gear and after quite a climb made it to the top feeling good and enjoyed the several miles of descent into the outskirts of Lopmpoc. Here we took a left turn and joined Hwy246 east to Solvang.

The shoulder was good and the road was rolling with long straight sections interspersed with gentle inclines and descents, the exact type of riding I really enjoy. I upped the game and put the hammer down as hard as I could go. The last 17 miles or so didn’t take long and I rode into Solvang with Steph shortly after 14:00 after a great day in the saddle.

After a quick shower I headed for the ice cream parlour for a hot fudge sundae and then onto the Irish bar for a couple of pints of Guinness and a Philly Cheesesteak.  All in all a very enjoyable day but I suspect I might regret it tomorrow!